Monday’s Blog: Sword of the Spirit (“Armor of Light” book release)

I released my second devotional book today on the Armor of God, titled “Armor of Light: A 7 – Week Devotional on Ephesians 6:10-18” (*see discount coupon code below). I wanted to share this excerpt with you from week six about taking up the sword of the spirit, God’s Word.

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WEEK SIX

 Sword of the Spirit

  … and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

~Ephesians 6:17

We can often get so caught up fighting with the devil that we neglect doing God’s will. We don’t have to continually fight the devil. That’s why all of the other armor is for defense, and only one piece is needed for offense—the sword of the Spirit (God’s Word).

When Jesus walked the earth, He didn’t constantly fight with Satan. Jesus came to do God’s will. When Satan tried to distract and tempt Him, Jesus didn’t ignore him. He used His authority, and the Word of God, to send Satan fleeing (Matthew 4:1-11). Jesus drove Satan away by believing and speaking God’s Word.

It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” With that same spirit of faith we also believe and therefore speak.

—2 Corinthians 4:13

When God first called me to follow Him and start writing, my family was attacked unmercifully. We were hit by one trial after another. The attacks were like nothing we had ever experienced before. They were so apparent that even others noticed we were being attacked. I thought for a moment that God was punishing us. I thought I misunderstood His calling and He was trying to stop me from writing.

But as the attacks continued, God opened my eyes and showed me that Satan was trying to distract me from doing God’s will. I was exhausting so much of my time and energy dealing with the messes that I didn’t have time to work on my writing. Once I realized what was happening, I stopped trying to fix the messes, and started focusing on God’s will. As I focused on God, and stood firm on His Word, Satan fled and the problems resolved.

God didn’t give us His Word just to send Satan fleeing. He gave us His Word to sanctify us and equip us to do His will.

Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.

—John 17:17

The Bible tells us that: “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). I’ve heard people say they don’t need to read the Bible daily because they’ve read it before. They say they already know right from wrong.

The Bible isn’t like a book that you read once and don’t need  anymore. There is power in God’s Word. When we feed our minds and hearts with His Word, it gives us power in our spirits.

The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.

—2 Corinthians 10:4

God’s Word tears down strongholds that we don’t know exist until we are in His Word. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

God’s Word reveals the dark places in us. His Word opens our eyes to what’s truly in our hearts. God’s Word is life to our bodies, souls, and spirits. We need God’s Word more than we need food and water.

Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.

—Matthew 4:4

There is power in believing and speaking the Word of God over our lives. “Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him” (Mark 11:23).

Jesus didn’t say if anyone “thinks” about moving the mountain. He said to “speak” to the mountain. Remember, Satan can’t read our minds. We can’t make him flee by just thinking the Word. We need to speak the Word!

Psalm 103:20 says, “Bless the LORD, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word” (KJV). It says angels hearken to the “voice” of His Word. When we speak God’s Word, His angels take heed and minister to us, as they did to Jesus after He drove Satan away with God’s Word.

Jesus said to him, “Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’ ” Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him.

—Matthew 4:10-11

*The “Armor of Light” is available in Paperback and Ebook  at Amazon. It will be released on audio format in May. As a special for all my blog readers, enter coupon code GQ5M59M5 at this link at Createspace and receive $3.00 off the paperback version!

 

Here’s a review on the book from one of my editors, Steve Sawyer:

This is the second book I have edited for Amanda Beth. I am especially enamored with two things Amanda Beth does as an author that distinguish her writing from some other Christian authors I’ve read.

First, Amanda Beth immerses herself in her writing. She doesn’t preach, She shares her heart. When you read one of Amanda Beth’s books, you are getting a glimpse of her personal life, her joys, her struggles, her strongholds, and her victories. Her personal life and her experience with God as He teaches her and grows her are what you get in the pages of her books. And everyone can relate. She is a thirty-something, stay-at-home mother of four young kids. But her message is universal. In Armor of Light anyone can relate to her experiences and her relationship with Jesus.

The other thing I like about Amanda Beth’s writing is the way she weaves God’s word throughout her writing. I have read books by other Christian authors whose references to Holy Scripture are not much more than token verses, sprinkled haphazardly throughout the book. Not Amanda Beth. Her writing is based on Scripture. Amanda Beth uses her personal life experiences to justify God’s word for us, rather than using God’s word to justify her writing or her opinions or her interpretation or application of Scripture, which is often the case with other Christian authors I’ve read.

Amanda doesn’t just decide to pick a topic and write a book about it. Amanda takes her direction directly from God. I can guarantee Amanda Beth spent months in prayer and Bible study before she sat down at her keyboard to write the first word of Armor Of Light.

In this second book, Amanda Beth shares how and why the armor of light is a necessary robe we need to wear. “When we don’t stand for the truths in God’s Word,” Amanda Beth said, “we open the door to deception. Too many Christians today are not standing for God’s Word as complete truth. As a result, Satan has sown many lies within the body of Christ. The Bible warns us that it’s only going to get worse. We need to be on guard so we don’t fall into this deception.” In her book Amanda Beth shares how God can keep us on guard so we won’t fall into deception from the enemy.

I can recommend Armor of Light without reservation. It is an easy read with questions and scripture for meditating and deepening your enjoyment and application of God’s truths.

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Monday’s Blog: Pray In The Spirit

This is the last blog in our “Armor of God” series. We end today with Ephesians 6:18 which says, “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.”

Prayer  is a powerful defense against Satan and his army. When we are in a relationship with Jesus, and in continual communion with God, He keeps us alert and prepared in battle. Revelation 12:17 says that Satan wages war against those who obey God’s commandments and hold to the testimony of Jesus. We need to pray for our brothers and sisters in the body of Christ to be alert and armed against Satan’s attacks.

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.

Colossians 4:2

Just as angels came and ministered to Jesus after He stood against Satan’s temptation (Matthew 4:10-11), when we humble ourselves before God and seek Him, He sends His angels in response to our prayers. In Daniel 9:20-23, an angel was sent to Daniel in response to his prayer:

While I was speaking and praying, confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel and making my request to the Lord my God for his holy hill— while I was still in prayer, Gabriel, the man I had seen in the earlier vision, came to me in swift flight about the time of the evening sacrifice. He instructed me and said to me, “Daniel, I have now come to give you insight and understanding. As soon as you began to pray, an answer was given, which I have come to tell you, for you are highly esteemed. Therefore, consider the message and understand the vision.

Daniel’s prayer was answered the moment he prayed. And he received that answer while he was still in prayer. Why do we receive answers to some prayers right away, but others take longer to get to us? Daniel didn’t receive his answer to prayer in the next chapter (Daniel 10) as quickly as he had in the verse above.  In Daniel 10:12-14, the angel explained why there was a delay:

“Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come in response to them. But the prince of the Persian kingdom resisted me twenty-one days. Then Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, because I was detained there with the king of Persia. Now I have come to explain to you what will happen to your people in the future, for the vision concerns a time yet to come.”

God hears and answers our prayers the moment we request them. But as these verses reveal, the devil can try to hinder us from receiving them. The Bible shares other things that hinder us from receiving answers to prayer. First Peter 3:7 tells us disobedience can hinder our prayers:

Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.

1 Peter 3:7

James 4:3 tells us the motives of our hearts hinder us from receiving answer to prayer:

When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

When our hearts are divided and not fully devoted to God, we will naturally request what our flesh desires. God loves us too much. He will not give us anything that will hurt us and draw our hearts away from Him.

Doubt and unbelief will also hinder us from receiving answers to our prayers:

But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does.

James 1:6-8

The Bible tells us to pray without ceasing, which means to be perseverant in our prayers (1 Thessalonians 5:17). God doesn’t tell us to be unceasing in our prayers to beg Him to answer us. He tells us to be unceasing so we don’t allow Satan to steal, through doubt and unbelief, what God already promised us. We stand against Satan when we are unceasing in our prayers.

I had an incident once where I felt like my world suddenly came crashing down on me. I got hit with something that was beyond what I could bear. As I was in tears wondering what was happening to me, I found the strength to praise God and tell Him I trusted Him to see me through it.. That same evening, my situation miraculously turned around right before my eyes. God heard my prayer, sent His answer and came to my defense.

The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.

A righteous man may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all.

Psalm 34:17, 19

We may not always see our prayers answered right away, but we can be sure God sent His answer the moment we requested it, and it’s on its way.

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.

Matthew 7:7

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**Prayer for the week**

Lord,

We praise You that You hear all our prayers and requests. And we praise You that You answer our prayers the moment we humbly request them. You are faithful to Your Word. Help us trust You and be unceasing in our prayers as we wait to see Your promises come to pass in our lives and the lives of others.

In Jesus’ mighty name, Amen!

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If you have never accepted Christ as your Savior, please click on the “SALVATION” tab at the top of the website. Don’t wait another day!

Come back next Monday as I share more of God’s Truths and the reasons behind the Truths.

All Bible verses are taken from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.


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Monday’s Blog: Sword Of The Spirit

To read previous blogs in this “Armor Of God” series, click here.

The Bible tells us the sword of the Spirit is the Word of God. God has given us the only offensive weapon we need—His Word. When Jesus was tempted by Satan, Jesus drove him away by speaking the Word of God. “It is written…,” He said. (Matthew 4:1-11).

Some people spend more time fighting with the enemy than doing God’s will. We don’t have to constantly fight the enemy. God has already given us victory over Satan. The battle has already been won.

As we learn from Jesus, His focus wasn’t constantly on Satan. His focus was on doing the will of God. When Satan got in the way of His mission, Jesus didn’t ignore him. Jesus used His authority to send Satan fleeing.

A couple years ago when God first called me to follow Him and write my book, my family was attacked greatly by the enemy. For about nine months straight we were hit by one thing after another. The attacks were like nothing we had ever experienced before. They were so strange that even others noticed we were being attacked. It felt like we were experiencing the plagues in the Bible. They were so odd that I thought for a moment God was punishing me. I thought I misunderstood His calling and He was trying to stop me from writing the book.

God eventually opened my eyes and showed me that the enemy was attacking me. All my time and energy was spent on cleaning up the messes the devil created. I had no time to work on my book. The devil was trying to distract me from doing God’s will. Once I stopped trying to fix the messes he created, and started speaking the Word of God over those situations and focused on doing God’s will, the attacks stopped and the problems went away.

God didn’t give us His Word just to fight the enemy. He gave us His Word to sanctify us and equip us to do His will.

Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.

—John 17:17

The Bible says, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:16-17).

I’ve heard people say they don’t need to read the Bible daily since they have read it before. They already know right from wrong.

The Bible isn’t like a book that you read once and that’s it. There is power in God’s Word. When we feed our minds and hearts the Word of God, it gives us power in our spirits. 2 Corinthians 10:4 says, “The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.”

God’s Word tears down strongholds that we don’t know exist until we are in His Word. Hebrews 4:12 says, “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”

God’s Word reveals the dark places in us. His Word opens our eyes to what’s truly in our hearts. We need God’s Word more than we need food and water. Jesus said, “Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).

There is also great power in speaking the Word of God over our lives. Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him” (Mark 11:23).

Jesus didn’t say if anyone “thinks” about moving the mountain. He said to “speak” to the mountain. I’ve spoken the Word of God over many situations and I’ve seen His power move mountains. I’ve seen Satan flee through the power of God’s Word. I’ve seen people healed through the power of His Word. I’ve seen strongholds torn down through the power of His Word.  There is power in God’s Word!

A dear friend directed me to Psalm 103:20 one time, which said, “Bless the LORD, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word” (KJV). My friend pointed out that this verse didn’t say the angels only hearken to God’s voice, but they hearken to the voice of “His Word.” When we speak God’s Word His angels take heed and tend to us as they did to Jesus after He drove Satan away by the Word of God (Matthew 4:11).

I want to clarify that we can’t speak God’s Word apart from His Holy Spirit. If we speak God’s Word apart from Him we will have no power to move mountains. God needs to be the One feeding us His Word. If we try to read and study the Bible apart from God, we will only gain head knowledge. True Godly wisdom is only found through God. He is the only One Who can unlock the hidden treasures in His Word and give us the power we need to move mountains.

I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe….

—Ephesians 1:17-19

When we allow God to fill our spirits with the power of His Word, we’ll have the wisdom and power to reach others. God will use us to draw hearts to Him.

Ezekiel 3:1-4; 10-11 says, “And he said to me, ‘Son of man, eat what is before you, eat this scroll; then go and speak to the house of Israel.’ So I opened my mouth, and he gave me the scroll to eat. Then he said to me, ‘Son of man, eat this scroll I am giving you and fill your stomach with it.’ So I ate it, and it tasted as sweet as honey in my mouth. He then said to me: ‘Son of man, go now to the house of Israel and speak my words to them.’”

“And he said to me, ‘Son of man, listen carefully and take to heart all the words I speak to you. Go now to your countrymen in exile and speak to them. Say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says,’ whether they listen or fail to listen.”

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**Prayer for the week**

Lord,

We praise You for giving us Your Word. Cleanse us through Your Word. Help us to put You first each day and allow You to fill us with Your Word so we can be fully equipped to do Your will. Help us to take up our swords and tear down every stronghold the enemy has built in our lives and the lives of others.

In Jesus’ precious name, Amen!

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I thought this song went well with this week’s message. I pray it blesses someone today!

If you’ve never accepted Christ as your Savior, please click on the “SALVATION” tab at the top of the website. Don’t wait another day!

Come back next Monday as I share more of God’s Truths and the reasons behind the Truths.

All Bible verses are taken from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.



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Monday’s Blog: Helmet Of Salvation

We continue our “Armor Of God” series with the helmet of salvation. If you’ve missed any blogs in this series click here.

Helmets are meant to protect our heads. Our minds are where Satan attacks us the most. When we don’t cast down the lies he tells us, we welcome him in to set up strongholds in our minds. If we don’t put on our helmets of salvation to guard our minds, we’ll start to believe his lies.

John 8:44 says the devil “was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.”

Satan has sewn countless lies in the minds of man since the beginning of creation. I was talking to my sister recently. I told her I wanted to buy a royalty free picture for the cover of my book. The company wouldn’t allow me to buy the picture since my book was Christian. We talked about how sad it was that God’s creation denies Him. We can’t freely talk about our Creator because He’s considered “controversial.”

God is real. Jesus is real. Heaven and hell are real. Whether we want to believe that or not, it’s the truth.

Salvation is only found in accepting Jesus’ atonement for our sins. Anything the world says other than that is a lie. Satan wants the world to believe his lies. He knows his fate. He knows he can’t beat God. His only way to get at God is to drag us down with him. Satan knows it’s excruciating for God to watch His creation die separated from Him. Satan’s mission is to deceive the world into denying the existence of God so they’d ignorantly follow him to his fate.

When I first started following Christ and started reading the Bible I was shocked at how many lies I believed. It took many years for God to tear down all the lies the enemy sowed in my mind.

Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.

—Romans 12:2

We are not supposed to think and act like the world does. The world is blinded by Satan’s deception. When we follow their ways, it’s like the blind leading the blind. Jesus said, “Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher” (Luke 6:39).

Do we want the world to be our teachers so we can be like them? Or do we want Jesus to be our teacher so we can be like Him?

To renew our minds we need to start filling our minds with the Word of God. God has given us His Word to tear down the lies Satan sows in our minds. We can’t let our guards down once we learn the Truth. We need to continually keep our minds filled with the Truth so there’s no room for deception.

For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

—2 Corinthians 10:3-5

I told this story in one of my first blogs. I think it’s worth repeating since it fits perfectly with this message. Last year I noticed my daughter was becoming negative toward herself. When it started happening more frequently I became concerned. Then one day she broke down in tears telling me how bad she was.

One of the things she was negative about was her schoolwork. She said she wasn’t smart, she couldn’t read good enough, and she wasn’t good at anything. It suddenly hit me as God revealed what was happening. I asked her…what does God say about you? I started sharing all the things God says about her. I told her God says we can do ALL things through Him who gives us strength. He equips us with everything we need to be the best we can be. I told her we are each gifted in a different way to do what God’s called us to do.

I said, “If God says these things about you, those things you believe are lies.” I told her Satan tells us lies. And I asked her if she was going to believe what Satan says over what God says. She looked at me and right away said “No!”

That moment she tore down the lies the enemy sowed in her mind. She recognized the lies, and chose to believe the Truth. Once she made that choice, she was back to her happy, joyful self.

We need to expose Satan’s lies and continually guard our minds against his deception.

Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

—James 4:7

 

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**Prayer for the week**

Lord,

Thank you for showing us the Truth. Help us to submit our minds to you and resist the enemy’s lies. Help us to tear down every stronghold the enemy has set up in our minds. Continually fill our minds with Your Truth and keep us free of deception.

In Jesus’ precious name, Amen!

Have a blessed week growing in Christ!

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Come back next Monday as I share more of God’s Truths and the reasons behind the Truths.

All Bible verses are taken from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.

If you’ve never accepted Christ as your Savior, please click on the “SALVATION” tab at the top of the website. Don’t wait another day!


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Monday’s Blog: Shield Of Faith

The next blog in our “Armor of God” series is the shield of faith. Ephesians 6:16 says, “In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.”

Do you feel constantly under attack? Are you worn down fighting the good fight of faith? Many times I’ve cried out to God, “I can’t take this anymore. Please rescue me!” At times I’ve felt I didn’t have any faith left to press on.

Paul and Timothy’s persecution was at times more than they could bear. Paul explained in 2 Corinthians 1:8-9a:

We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about the hardships we suffered in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired even of life. Indeed, in our hearts we felt the sentence of death….

If God wants us to have faith, why does He allow the devil to attack us and beat us down?

After Paul talked about their hardships, he explained why God allowed it in 2 Corinthians 1:9-10: “But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us….”

We have two choices during trials. We can let the fiery darts the devil hurls at us beat us down and weaken our faith. Or, we can pick up our shield and let the darts fall to the ground while we stand strong in our faith.

Each trial is an opportunity to see God move in a supernatural way. When our hope is in God, He can do “immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us” (Ephesians 3:20).

Faith is not convincing God to move on our behalf. Faith is opening our hearts to receive what He’s already promised us. Faith keeps us trusting God to do what He knows is best for us. Faith keeps us expecting the unexpected.

In Lamentations 3:1-20, Jeremiah started losing hope as he focused on his trials. In verse 20 he cried, “I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.” Then he made a sudden turn in verse 21, “Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope,” he praised. Jeremiah started talking about God’s mercy, compassion, and love. As he got his mind off his troubles and started thinking about God’s faithfulness, it lifted him out of the pit of despair.

The greatest thing we can do to strengthen our faith is to praise God. Praising God throughout our day keeps us looking expectantly to Him. Praising God keeps us focused on Him and not our problems. When our hearts are filled with praise, our shield is up and no trial, tribulation, or persecution can weaken our faith.

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that your faith–of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire–may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

1 Peter 1:6-7

I encourage you to hold up your shield of faith. Don’t lay it down. Each trial is an opportunity for your faith to grow. God won’t allow more than you can bear. He will always give you His grace to carry you through trials. And He will work ALL things out for your benefit if you put your faith in Him.

 

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**Prayer for the week**

Heavenly Father,

We praise You for giving us Your armor so we can be prepared in every situation. Help us to hold up our shield of faith. Strengthen us in our trials, and help us focus on You. We lift our voices in praise to You, Lord. Thank You for Your immeasurable love for us.

In Jesus’ precious name, Amen!

Have a blessed week growing in Christ!

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Come back next Monday as I share more of God’s Truths and the reasons behind the Truths.

All Bible verses are taken from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.

If you’ve never accepted Christ as your Savior, please click on the “SALVATION” tab at the top of the website. Don’t wait another day!


Posted in Armor Of God Series, Monday's Blogs by with
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Monday’s Blog: Shoes Of Peace

This is the third blog in our “Armor Of God” series (Ephesians 6:10-18). If you missed the last two weeks click on “Belt of Truth” and “Breastplate Of Righteousness.”

The New Living Translation for Ephesians 6:15 says, “For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.” Jesus left us His peace so we would be prepared in every situation we face. We stand prepared by continually walking in His peace.

I was grocery shopping recently with my kids when I witnessed two women yelling obscenely at each other in the parking lot. One woman even had her child with her as she was cussing the other woman out. Then, after I left the grocery store, I stopped at a traffic light and two men behind me did the same thing.

I thought how easy it is to lose our peace. We could be walking strong in the Lord when the devil catches us off guard and sends the right person to set us off. If we are not prepared at all times and don’t recognize these ploys we can lose our peace as those men and women did.

Have you ever been caught off guard and lost your peace?  I have many times. The devil knows just the right time and just the right person he can use to try to steal my peace.

One incident was when my baby was about nine months old. I had him and my toddler with me at the grocery store. At that time, my infant would randomly let out ear-piercing screams. They weren’t cries. They were playful screams. But they were annoyingly loud. I tried everything I could to keep him quiet in the store. He was okay at the beginning, but when my cart was full he started to shout out screams.

I didn’t want to annoy anyone. So I anxiously rushed to get the last few items I needed before I headed to the checkout. As I was rushing through the store, a woman walked by my cart. As she passed by, my son let out a scream that made her jump. She then got mad and huffed at me. I asked her what I was supposed to do.  She harshly replied, “Pick him up!!” Well, anyone who has kids knows it isn’t easy to hold a baby, push a toddler and a cart full of groceries. Besides that, he wasn’t crying. Picking him up wouldn’t have stopped him anyway.

I got mad at her response and responded harshly. After, I felt bad because I knew it was just the enemy trying to get me to fall, and I let him succeed. After that incident, anyone I shared that story with said they would’ve done the same thing. Just because we may think we are justified in our actions doesn’t mean we are right. One of those men or women at the grocery store and traffic light may have been justified in their anger, but that doesn’t mean it was right to lose their peace over it.

Isaiah 26:3 says, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you” (NLT). My mind wasn’t on God at the grocery store. My mind was too busying worrying what other people thought. If my mind would have been on God, I know I would’ve responded differently. If I would’ve responded kindly to that woman, God could’ve used it to soften her heart.

A gentle answer deflects anger, but harsh words make tempers flare.

—Proverbs 15:1 NLT

We need to put on the shoes of peace daily. When we get up each day, we need to set our minds on God and continue relying on Him throughout our day. When our minds are on Him nothing the enemy throws at us can take us down.

“Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”

—Luke 2:14 NLT

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**Something to think about this week**

God was pleased to give you His peace. Don’t let the enemy steal it. Carry this verse through your week to remind you that Jesus and His peace are always with you.

Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you.

—2 Thessalonians 3:16

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*Come back next Monday as I share more of God’s Truths and the reasons behind the Truths.

*All Bible verses are taken from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.

*If you’ve never accepted Christ as your Savior, please click on the “SALVATION” tab at the top of the website. Don’t wait another day!


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Monday’s Blog: Breastplate Of Righteousness

This is the second blog in our series on the armor of God. Ephesians 6:14 tells us to put on the breastplate of righteousness. The amplified Bible explains righteousness as integrity, moral rectitude, and right standing with God. Job said he put on righteousness as his clothing (Job 29:14). When we receive Jesus His righteousness is imputed to us. We can then joyfully wear His righteousness or return to miserably wearing our unrighteousness.

Isaiah 61:10 says, “I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.”

Most of you probably remember the movie “Annie.” Annie was an orphan who lived a poor, miserable life under the control of the evil Miss Hannigan. Her life changed when she touched the heart of the wealthy Oliver Warbucks.

At the end of the movie, he adopted her and welcomed her as his own. She was set free from captivity and orphanhood and welcomed into a loving family. Everything he had was given to her as well.

Annie went from rags to riches. She went from barely enough to more than enough. She went from being despised to being adored. She went from wearing clothes covered in filth to having fresh clean garments to wear. She had truly been given everything one could desire.

But what if the movie didn’t end that way? What if Annie decided after a few months to give up her new inheritance and put back on her filthy rags and return to the control of Miss Hannigan? That would’ve made no sense. Why would she give up her freedom, her riches, her beautiful garments, and a father who loved her, to return to captivity and serve the one who despised her?

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

—Galatians 5:1

This is the choice we have to make once we receive Jesus. We can put on His righteousness, live out our inheritance with our Heavenly Father, or we can strip it off, leave our inheritance, lay down our authority, and go back into captivity serving the one who despises us.

Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living.

—Romans 6:16 NLT

I know a woman who accepted Christ awhile back. There was a noticeable change in her almost immediately. It was like a light turned on in her and she finally understood the Truth. It didn’t last long, though. It was no sooner she was back to her old ways. It was as if the light turned off and she was blind again. She chose to return to her filthy rags instead of wearing the righteousness Jesus died to give her. She left her inheritance and returned to captivity, serving the one who despised her. Today, you wouldn’t even know she accepted Christ. She’s the same as before, if not worse.

Luke 11:24-26 says, “When an evilspirit comes out of a man, it goes through arid places seeking rest and does not find it. Then it says, ‘I will return to the house I left.’ When it arrives, it finds the house swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and takes seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that man is worse than the first.”

When we accept Christ’s atonement for our sins, we are washed clean. Yet, if we don’t put on righteousness, by welcoming God into our homes (hearts) daily, the door will be wide open for the enemy. God said to put on the “breastplate” of righteousness. The breastplate protects our hearts. When our hearts are undivided toward God, His righteousness covers us and guides us into holiness. Then, nothing the enemy throws at us can harm us. The doors of our hearts will be guarded and sealed shut. The enemy can’t come into our homes when our hearts are filled with God and His righteousness.

You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness. I put this in human terms because you are weak in your natural selves. Just as you used to offer the parts of your body in slavery to impurity and to ever-increasing wickedness, so now offer them in slavery to righteousness leading to holiness.

—Romans 6:18-19

I encourage you to put on righteousness. Give God your whole heart. Live each day drawing closer to Him. God is not expecting perfection from us. He wants our hearts. When He has our hearts, He can perfect us.

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**Something to think about this week**

Ask God to help you keep your heart fixed on Him. He’s given you everything you could ever desire. Enjoy living for Him, wearing His righteousness!

Light is sown for the [uncompromisingly] righteous and strewn along their pathway, and joy for the upright in heart [the irrepressible joy which comes from consciousness of His favor and protection].

—Psalm 97:11 AMP

Have a blessed Fourth of July!

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**Come back next Monday as I share more of God’s Truths and the reasons behind the Truths.

All Bible verses are taken from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.

If you’ve never accepted Christ as your Savior, please click on the “SALVATION” tab at the top of the website. Don’t wait another day!

 


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Monday’s Blog: Belt Of Truth

I’m so excited to be back and starting our new series on the “Armor of God.” The armor of God isn’t something we have to strive to obtain. It’s already been given to us through Christ. We need to learn what it is, why we need it, and how to put it on.

Ephesians 6:10-17 explains what the armor of God is and why we need it:

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

We need God’s armor to stand against Satan and his spiritual forces coming against us. We can’t stand against Satan’s schemes on our own. As these verses say, our struggles aren’t against people. We are not in a battle against one another, even though it often appears that way. Our real battle is against Satan and his forces. They are the ones behind the scenes trying to take us down. We need God’s armor to help us stand against their attacks.

The first armor explained is the belt of Truth. In the Bible days men wore robes. When they’d fight they would secure their robes with a belt to avoid getting entangled. In the same way, we need to wear the belt of Truth to avoid getting entangled in Satan’s lies.

We won’t be able to stand against Satan’s deception without first believing ALL God’s Words are true. Many Christians would say they believe the Bible is true. But if you mention verses that stretch their faith, like Mark 16:17-18, they don’t believe it applies today.

And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.

I may not understand everything about healing, speaking in tongues, or driving out demons. But that doesn’t mean I don’t believe these verses are true. I don’t have to understand everything about the Bible to believe everything in there.

Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

—John 8:31-32

This says if we hold to His teachings, then we will know the Truth. As we believe it, we will start walking in it, and then we’ll gain an understanding of the Truth as we see it manifest in our lives.

…for understanding proverbs and parables, the sayings and riddles of the wise. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge….

—Proverbs 1:6-7

To fear the Lord means to live in reverence to Him. We won’t live in reverence to God if we don’t believe Him. Faith comes first, then sight.

If we don’t stand for God’s Truth, we’ll open the door to deception. We see this widespread in the body of Christ today. So many Christians aren’t standing for the Truth. It’s amazing how many lies the enemy has sown in the body of Christ.

For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.

—2 Timothy 4:3

But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves… having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over weak-willed women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to acknowledge the truth.

—2 Timothy 3:1-7

I had a Christian editor edit my book last year. This editor took out any scripture and teaching that was “uncomfortable.” I put everything back according to the Word of God. I will not accept what anyone says over what God says.

I didn’t get where I am today by listening to what I wanted to hear. I listened to what I needed to hear. Everything in God’s Word isn’t warm and fuzzy. Most of it’s uncomfortable and hard to bear. But it’s what we need if we want to stand against the enemy’s deception and live in victory.

John 6:60-64 tells us that many of Jesus’ disciples turned back and no longer followed Him because His teachings were hard.

On hearing it, many of his disciples said, “This is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?” Aware that his disciples were grumbling about this, Jesus said to them, “Does this offend you? What if you see the Son of Man ascend to where he was before! The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life. Yet there are some of you who do not believe.”

We are nothing in our flesh. We can’t stand against Satan’s attacks on our own. We need spiritual armor to stand against him.

We have only two choices in life. We either believe God’s Word and put on His armor, or we believe Satan’s lies and allow him to take us captive to do his will (2 Timothy 2:26). There is no in between.

I strongly encourage you to stand for the Truth. Make sure what you learn from others is the Truth. We need to always check what we learn and make sure it’s according to the Word of God. Otherwise, we open the door to Satan’s deception.

And the people of Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, and they listened eagerly to Paul’s message. They searched the Scriptures day after day to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth.

—Acts 17:11 NLT

We will always stand against the enemy when we hold to the Word of God as Truth.

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**Something to think about this week**

Ask God to help you stand firm in His Word. Ask Him to help you break down any lies the enemy has sown in your life. As you believe His Word is true, and strive to live according to it, God will reveal His Truth to you!

Let me now remind you, dear brothers and sisters,of the Good News I preached to you before. You welcomed it then, and you still stand firm in it. It is this Good News that saves you if you continue to believe the message I told you—unless, of course, you believed something that was never true in the first place.

—1 Corinthians 15:1-2 NLT

Have a blessed week in Christ!

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If you’ve never accepted Christ as your Savior, please click on the “SALVATION” tab at the top of the website. Don’t wait another day!

**Come back next Monday as I share more of God’s Truths and the reasons behind the Truths.

All Bible verses are taken from the NIV, unless otherwise noted.

 

 


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